Health Alert: bat confirmed to have rabies in Lubbock

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Updated for statement from City of Lubbock

LUBBOCK, Texas — Lubbock Animal Services confirmed on Thursday that a bat was found in Southwest Lubbock, and it tested positive for rabies.

Someone found the bat having seizures on August 18. At first, it was taken to the South Plains Wildlife Rehabilitation Center. The center contacted Lubbock Animal Services for assistance.

LAS said it died overnight between August 18 and 19. LAS on August 19 then sent it to a state lab.

On Thursday, the test results came back. LAS said two dogs were exposed to the bat, and those dogs, which have not been vaccinated for rabies, have been placed in quarantine. The quarantine will be for 90 days.

There was a bat in a building reported to LAS Thursday. It was not located. LAS said any unusual animal activity should be reported, and LAS said the city is on high alert for this issue.

Rabies is a deadly virus that can be transmitted to humans through the saliva of an infected animal. Anyone who might have been exposed to a rabid animal should seek medical attention immediately.

EverythingLubbock.com will provide updates when possible.

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UPDATE: Lubbock Animal Services provided an update to say the bat died on its own. It was not euthanized.

The following is a statement provided by the City of Lubbock after this story was initially published.

Health Alert: Rabies Lubbock, Texas

A bat found in south Lubbock has tested positive for rabies. This is the second reported rabies case in Lubbock this year.

Rabies is a viral illness that can be transmitted to humans through an infected animal’s saliva. The illness can be prevented with treatment before symptoms begin. However, once a person has symptoms, the disease is almost always fatal. Anyone who comes in contact with a potentially rabid animal should seek medical attention as soon as possible.

An animal with rabies can infect other wild or domestic animals that have not been vaccinated against rabies. The City of Lubbock reminds people that domestic animals should be vaccinated against rabies as required by law. All wild life contact should be avoided, particularly contact with coyotes, bats, foxes, and skunks.

Residents are advised to take the following precautions:

  • Keep rabies vaccinations up to date for all pets.
  • Keep your pets under direct supervision so they do not come in contact with wild animals. If your pet is bitten by a wild animal, seek veterinary assistance for the animal immediately.
  • Do not handle, feed, or unintentionally attract wild animals with open garbage cans or litter.
  • Never adopt wild animals or bring them into your home.
  • Teach children never to handle unfamiliar animals, wild or domestic, even if they appear friendly.
  • If you pet is bitten by wild animal report the bite to Lubbock Animal Services at 806-775-2057 or 806-775-3357 so the animal may be placed in rabies observation or submitted for rabies testing.

For more information on Rabies visit the CDC website at: https://www.cdc.gov/rabies

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